New troops in the fight with cancer

Lead skin Cancer Nurse, Heather Baines, Macmillan Skin Cancer Nurse Specialist Joan DeVega and Skin Cancer Care Coordinator, Michelle Forsyth
Lead skin Cancer Nurse, Heather Baines, Macmillan Skin Cancer Nurse Specialist Joan DeVega and Skin Cancer Care Coordinator, Michelle Forsyth
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A team of specialists is taking part in a new scheme to raise skin cancer awareness.

The skin cancer team, based at Clifton Hospital, on Pershore Road, St Annes, is supporting the Melanoma and Skin Cancer Early Detection (MASCED) programme for hair, health and beauty industry professionals.

The programme – which encourages early detection of skin cancer by hairdressers and beauty therapists – has already been rolled out over the Fylde coast and a student event is also planned this month.

Macmillan skin cancer care coordinator, Michelle Forsyth, said: “Staff in these industries are often the first to spot potential skin problems, especially if they are found on the scalp, back or other areas that are hard to see yourself.

“A lot of salons in the area have already gained their online accreditation and to promote this further the team will be visiting Blackpool and the Fylde College’s hair and beauty department on May 15.”

The team will be at the Bispham campus, from 9am to 5pm, encouraging students to become more aware of potential skin cancers and to encourage their clients to visit the GP, if they feel something may need further investigation.

Michelle added: “Early detection of skin cancers is vital, that’s why it is so important to be aware and to be safe in the sun.”

The scheme is run by Skcin, the Karen Clifford melanoma and skin cancer charity.

Signs and symptoms of skin cancer vary and things to look out for could also be down to other conditions, but can include abnormal moles, a spot or sore which doesn’t heal within four weeks, a spot which is itchy, crusty or bleeds for more than four weeks, a skin ulcer which doesn’t heal for four weeks, small, shiny pink or red lumps or red patches – anything which is unusual.

* Visit www.macmillan.org.uk